Mother Nature held off long enough on Tuesday as the Colts got through their first padded practice of the year.
The hitting was revved up during the afternoon practice with the running game being the focal point.
Here are three takeaways from day three…
Physicality taken to another level: The first of nine padded practices are in the books after Tuesday’s afternoon session.
The hitting started early and often with 1-on-1 drills between the running backs and linebackers and then the offensive and defensive lines.
Some of the biggest hits on the afternoon came from inside linebacker Kavell Conner and new safety LaRon Landry.
It might not have the excitement of a two-minute drill but watching blocking drills can be very telling of who will see playing time on a team that has preached physicality since the start of training camp .
Over the next few weeks the competition should separate themselves with the running game continued to be focused on with the padded practices underway.
Josh McNary can still ride this bike: The Colts welcomed linebacker Josh McNary fresh off his service in the Army.
McNary trotted out to practice early in the afternoon and wasted no time making an impression.
He dominated his first two reps in one-on-one drills and showed the pass rushing prowess that led him to set Army’s school record for sacks (28.0).
Ryan Grigson told McNary before practice that being back out on the football field “would be like riding a bike” and the 251-pound outside linebacker agreed with that sentiment following his first NFL practice.
McNary’s progress will be interesting to watch at one of the Colts deepest positions.
Depth on lines critical moving forward: Perhaps no position on the football field has to rely on more bodies during the course of the game than the defensive line.
After day one, it’s pretty clear the Colts have a ton of defensive line depth with rookies Montori Hughes and Bjoern Werner (with his hand on the ground) winning a majority of their reps.
Having guys like Josh Chapman, Drake Nevis and Hughes not running with the first team just shows how deep the line can be.
On the other side of the ball, the Colts are still waiting to see what they have in picks Hugh Thornton and Khaled Holmes.
Thornton is nursing an ankle injury that he suffered late last week.
Holmes now joins his fellow rookie on the sideline after the Colts fourth round draft pick left Tuesday’s afternoon practice with a right ankle injury.
Joe Reitz seems to be firmly entrenched as the Colts sixth offensive lineman, seeing some time in jumbo packages on Tuesday.
Tags: Bjoern Werner, drake nevis, Hugh Thornton, josh chapman, josh mcnary, kavell conner, khaled holmes, laron landry, Montori Hughes
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